Straight Talk Advice

Mar 11, 2009

It’s not Lori, it’s the porn industry

DEAR STRAIGHT TALK: Lauren’s response to Lori, the 20-year-old woman worried about raising her child in our “raunchy” culture (FEB 18, 2009), was correct in that we need to shelter our young from bad behavior in media and other environments. But I am disappointed that nobody addressed the fact that Lori is pregnant and unmarried. Lori’s lifestyle is the most powerful message she will be send to her child. Her child will figure out that he/she was conceived outside of marriage. Lori worries about “raunchy” culture, but she is it! She could be one of the people her fiancé’s nephews are pointing at and calling a prostitute. Why did you ignore this huge elephant in the room? Is being pregnant and unmarried that common and acceptable? — Mary, Yuba City CA

Mariah 17, Collinsville, OK Ask me a question

Lori is engaged and in a committed relationship so I don’t see an elephant in the room. It’s a new generation and the world is changing. She is worried for her future child, how can we bash that?

Peter 21, Monterey, CA Ask me a question

It’s easy to judge someone based on a snapshot (unmarried, 20, pregnant), but being born out-of-wedlock isn’t a crime. What people should look at is that she cares about her child. If you want to judge someone, how about starting with the positive instead of the negative?

Laura 22, Fair Oaks, CA Ask me a question

I see nothing to criticize. The stigma against being pregnant and married is almost entirely religious. You equate pregnant 20-year-olds with prostitutes, however, vast numbers of people in this country disagree. Lori is more articulate than most parents who write us, and she has the maturity to worry about how to raise a well-adjusted child. What would bother me is if she got married simply because she got pregnant.

Lennon 22, Fair Oaks, CA Ask me a question

My mom was pregnant with me before she and my dad married. It doesn’t mean my parents loved each other, or me, any less. I’m not scarred by it, I’ve never thought it weird, and I’ve never thought my parents married because of me. People have sex outside marriage all the time. It’s not “raunchy”. Please move into the 21st century with the rest of us.

Rosie 15, Fair Oaks, CA Ask me a question

If Lori didn’t want her baby, or was abusing drugs, that would bother me. But Lori is engaged to be married and is obviously very concerned for her child. This is America. Many people have decided they don’t need government approval to love or live with somebody. My own parents were never married. I was never looked down upon for that. What really matters for a child is having two good, loving parents. Until middle school, these parents are the primary socializing agent for their child.

DEAR MARY: I honestly appreciate your point, which was echoed in numerous letters. And yes, when the Republican Party touts Sarah Palin’s daughter’s out-of-wedlock pregnancy as “good family values”, things are indeed changing. But this change wasn’t born overnight. Two of five responding panelists were themselves born out-of-wedlock without stigma. With shameful exceptions, you have to reach back to grandparents to find women who were hidden, beaten, sent to unwed mothers’ homes, or back-alley abortion clinics. I am thrilled a young mother wrote wanting to protect her child from what really is raunchy and what really has oozed overnight into every crevice of mainstream culture — and that is the pornography industry. Since the World Wide Web’s invention 20 years ago, we now have Jenna Jameson, highest paid porn star ever, interviewed in Abercrombie & Fitch catalogues, Girls gone Wild videos, Paris Hilton’s sex tapes and resultant ‘fame’, celebrity girl-girl romps, suburban strip clubs, mother-daughter pole dancing classes, breast implants, labia rejuvenation surgery, thong underwear, freak dancing, and ‘sex’ messaging. That’s raunch culture, not Lori. That’s where to take your attack.

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